KARACHI: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said on Saturday that it was not his party but the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) which compromised its position in the recently-held election for Senate chairman.

“The PML-N and its allies voted for our candidates,” he said in an interview to ARY News. “We are clear on our stance. In fact Imran Khan has changed his stance. While claiming to bring change, he took a U-turn and voted for candidates backed by our party.”

In reply to a question, he hinted at giving a role to former Senate chairman Raza Rabbani in Karachi politics.

Striking against the PTI and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) in one go, he called the ruling party in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa “friends of terrorists”, labelled the Muttahida a “terrorists’ party” and came down hard on the founding leaders of both organisations for their “politics of hatred”.

Peoples Party chief links both MQM and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf to terrorism

“For me there is no difference between Uncle Altaf and Chacha Imran,” he said with a broad smile. “We have experienced Altaf Hussain’s politics here in Karachi. I am Karachi-born and everyone like me knows how his politics of militancy and hatred damaged Karachi. So we don’t want another Altaf Hussain because his [Imran Khan] politics of hatred, U-turns and controversial statements are similar to Altaf Hussain.”

Mr Bhutto-Zardari was not ready to draw a distinction between the Altaf Hussain-led party and the MQM-Pakistan, saying that whatever the London-based leader was blamed for his role in Karachi politics, the leadership of the existing party was equally responsible for all those wrongdoings.

“Altaf Hussain is in London and he didn’t do everything alone. If we criticise or dislike him, we should take the same line against them (MQM-P leaders) too,” he said.

Published in Dawn, March 18th, 2018

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